We sent these out as volumising duos, rather than individual products – increasingly, we’re coming round to the realisation that most readers love a ‘matching’ shampoo and conditioner. But below we’ll also tell you whether the shampoo or the conditioner was deemed to be the ‘star player’.
GOLD AWARD Percy and Reed Bountifully Bouncy Volumising Shampoo & Conditioner
Percy & Reed are awfully, awfully good at volume – whether or not you book in for a blow-dry at one of their award-winning too-cool-for-school London salons, or splash out on their excellent and high-performance haircare.
Both products feature blackcurrant extract to ‘big up’ fine hair, alongside conditioning grapeseed oil and aloe vera gel. In this case, readers gave a slightly higher score to the conditioner than the shampoo – and we suggest you read the individual real-life tester comments for the insights into why.
In contrast to many conditioners, which can weigh down here, this is a really ‘amplifying’ formula. In the case of the shampoo, their tip is to apply strong fingertip pressure to the scalp while lathering, to stimulate blood flow and encourage healthy hair. (The pump-action shampoo and conditioner have only five-star reviews on their own site, NB – reflecting our testers’ feelings.)
OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:
‘The shampoo didn't lather lots but I remember being told by a hairdresser that only bad shampoos lather so I took that as a good sign. It definitely cleaned my hair even post gym. Combined with the conditioner, it definitely increased volume and made my hair somewhat more manageable. The volume lasted a couple of days, however I’ve been so taken with my newfound volume that I keep touching my hair – it might last longer without my greasy mitts all over it! It did an excellent job of cleansing my scalp as much as my hair’ • ‘My hair felt very clean and refreshed and, although it is grey, there was some shine. It did retain volume and was easy to style, staying in shape all day. No irritation at all’ • ‘These products gave my hair bounce, and left it looking shiny and healthy. It was easy to comb after’ • ‘My very flat lifeless hair did feel a bit thicker and fuller after using these products, not massively but enough to notice a subtle difference. Together with the conditioner, my hair was more manageable and in better condition generally’ • ‘I really loved this shampoo and conditioner. I loved the well thought out design and the products. I’m transitioning to grey and my hair is quite dry so these products gave my hair a real boost and looked really nice after blow drying. Really lived up to the claims. Left hair looking shiny and healthy, with bounce and volume. Other shampoo/conditioners I have used in the past, which claimed the same results, have always fallen flat - just like my hair’
Shampoo - £16 for 250ml - click to buy
Conditioner - £16 for 250ml - click to buy
SILVER AWARD Kerluxe AquaVol Shampoo & Conditioner
Kerluxe’s premium haircare products are born out of Swiss skincare technology (and the oft-ignored fact is that your scalp is skin, too). So their philosophy is that the skin and hair should be treated with the same high quality regime as our complexions. Of the six collections in the range, all quite glamorously-packaged and luxuriously-packaged, this duo is designed to ‘give life back into dull, lacklustre hair’ – but our testers trialled it specifically for its promised volumising properties. Key ingredients include black oat extract and peptides with what they describe as ‘lock and volume stimulation technology’. As is often the case we prefer to listen to what our testers say than that sort of beauty jargon – so read on. In this case, the shampoo impressed more than the conditioner did. (They really weren’t so keen on the conditioner but if you do like your haircare to ‘match’, it’s definitely worth a go.)
OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:
‘I liked the light fragrance and this lathered nicely but not too foamy. My hair felt very clean. Using both products, my hair was smooth and glossy with added volume and lovely bounce. It has a nice silky texture. These products are better than any I’ve used so far and I loved the results. My hair has improved over the time I’ve used these, with more bounce and volume. People have remarked how nice it looks’ • ‘These products are so easy to apply with a clean fresh expensive smell that defies description. My hair now has the perfect glossy sheen so shiny and smooth. There are massive improvements to the manageability of my thick hair; it hugely de-frizzed my ends without making the roots look greasy. There is a slight volume lift at the roots. My hair feels like a child’s again. I can’t believe how silky smooth and healthy it is. I absolutely love this hair care’ • ‘My coloured hair is really glossy and healthy looking now. The products gave added volume, which lasted all day. It left hair bouncy and conditioned, without being weighed down’ • ‘My hair feels thicker than normal and therefore volumised. My roots don’t seem to get as greasy, which normally can weigh my hair down, so I can maintain volume for three or four days. However this volume is quite subtle and it’s more noticeable in the actual feel of the hair rather than how it looks. The fragrance is to die for!’ • ‘I was extremely impressed that this did have a volumising effect on my long thick hair. It feels far cleaner and definitely looks glossier and shinier than normal. It is so much softer and looks much healthier now. It is far easier to brush’ • ‘My coloured hair looked really good with these products. It definitely had more volume and was really glossy and healthy looking’
Shampoo: £38 for 250ml - click to buy
Conditioner: £40 for 250ml - click to buy
BRONZE & BEST NATURAL AWARD - Aveda Invati Exfoliating Shampoo & Invati Thickening Conditioner
Over the years, Aveda have time and again impressed our Beauty Bible panellists with their haircare offering. Invati was introduced a few years ago specifically to target thinning and weak hair (and there’s now a sub-range targeted at men). Aveda-ishly-scented as ever, this offers a lightweight, sulphate-free shampoo and a conditioner, each featuring their densiplexTM complex, derived from turmeric and ginseng to boost elasticity and minimise breakage. The shampoo works to reduce sebum build-up (which can block follicles), along with milk thistle extract to soothe tight, dry scalps. The conditioner, meanwhile, gets its strengthening power from a blend of guar, palm and grapeseed-derived ingredients, along with nourishing kukui nut oil. The shampoo and conditioner were equally well-liked in this case.
OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:
‘I usually wash my long hair every day as it can become quite greasy; however I found that I could sometimes wash every second day with the Invati shampoo and conditioner, partly because of the volumising effects. It wasn't a huge amount of volume but definitely noticeable. I suffer from an irritated scalp and can frequently have a reaction to shampoos but this one was fine, I didn't have any problems at all. I have blonde hair, which means it never looks as glossy as dark hair, but I did feel my hair was slightly shinier after using the conditioner. I love these products. I think they do help reduce hair loss, hard to tell how much by but I would definitely recommend the products for anyone with these concerns’ • ‘I love these. The products definitely made my hair look thicker and my hairdresser remarked on the difference in volume. My unruly hair was very manageable too and the sore spots on my scalp cleared’ • ‘Excellent product. My hair looks thicker with a high gloss and is easier to manage. The volume lasted a day. Overall, my hair looks thicker and glossier and younger. It took time to see the benefits but my partner also sneaked in to use these and his hair is looking like a young spaniel’s, albeit a grey one…’ • ‘I noticed a definite volumising effect, which made my hair look good when I blow dried and styled it. There was no lather with the shampoo, which I found weird. When I wash my hair, I like a lather!’ • ‘This created a good bouncy fresh-looking effect and was easily styled/brushed after and felt healthy’ • ‘This gave a good amount of volume and lovely shine. It was easy to comb through and my hair seemed to last longer between washes. Even though I am blonder, it did look glossier’
Shampoo: £21.25 for 200ml - click to buy
Conditioner: £22.95 for 200ml - click to buy